Italian Cream Cake

Italian Cream Cake is an old fashioned cake recipe made with self-rising flour, butter, coconut, and nuts, then topped with a yummy Cream Cheese Frosting.

A caterer served this at my friend's wedding reception in the early 1970's.

The cake is often referred to as an Italian Wedding Cake although it is more southern than Italian. 

It is interesting, considering it's name that it's history is unknown.

This delicious, moist cake was a first place Blue Ribbon winner at the Guilford County Fair in Greensboro, N. C. in the 1970s.

Italian Cream Cake Recipe

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening

  • 1 stick butter

  • 5 eggs, separated

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla flavoring

  • 1 cup buttermilk

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 2 cups sifted self-rising flour

  • 1 cup pecans. ground

  • 1 small can (3.5 oz. = 1 1/3 cups) Baker's Angel Flake Coconut

Cream shortening and butter.

Add sugar and cream until light and fluffy.

Add egg yolks, one at a time creaming after each addition.

Stir in vanilla.

Stir soda into buttermilk and quickly add alternately with flour to creamed mixture.

Fold in ground nuts and coconut.

Bake in three 8 inch or 9 inch baking pans in a preheated oven 350F. 25-30 minutes.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 stick butter

  • 8 oz. cream cheese

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1 lb. powdered sugar

  • 4-6 tablespoon milk

Let ingredients get to room temperature.

Cream butter and cheese together.

Stir in vanilla.

Beat in sugar adding enough milk to make a soft spreading consistency.

Spread frosting between layers, on tops and sides.

Cake best served at room temperature.

Note: This basic Cream Cheese Frosting will enhance many other cakes such as Carrot Cake and dark Devils Food Cake.

History Of the Italian Cream Cake

The history of the Old Fashioned Italian Cream Cake Recipe is believed to have stated during the Italy Renaissance era around 1350-1400, according to food historians.

Of course it has evolved as most old cakes have into a dessert that resembles the first recipes very little. 

It was sweet with a type of creamy pudding filling that makes me wonder if it was similar to a Boston Cream Pie.

The first few mentions of the cake that was in publications did not include the recipe.

The first mention that has been discovered, to date, that listed the recipe was in 1937.

I have not tried making the 1937 version, but find it intriguing.

According to the recipe it has a more lemon than vanilla taste.

Many old recipes leave a lot to be desired in the instructions as does this one.

The 1937 Italian Cream Cake Recipe instructs the baker to bake the cake in an angel food cake pan.

Then, when the cake is cold to slice it into layers.

The instructions instruct the baker to slice the cake into layers without mentioning how many layers.

Hower, I recommend slicing it into three, maybe four layers.

Then fill the layers with a cream filling. I suggest a Vanilla Custard Cream Filling and decorate it with whipped cream.

Homemade Whipped Cream is absolutely  delicious without being too sweet.


There is no mention of how long to cook it.

I suggest cooking it at 350F. for 60 minutes like a pound cake and test it with a toothpick to see how done it is.

If you do try making this cake in a tube pan, please send me a contact how it turned out and how you cooked it.

Thank you!

Related Pages

German Chocolate Cake Recipe

Lady Baltimore Cake Recipe

Oatmeal Cake Recipe With Craisins

Pig Pickin Cake Recipe

Red Velvet Cake Recipe

Vanilla Cake Recipe

Return to Old Fashioned Cake Recipes


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